Immanuel Kant continued…
-Supreme Principle of Morality
!Categorical Imperative: I shall never act except in such a way that I can also will that
my maxim become a universal law
!This is basically saying that one should never act unless your maxim will become a
!This is the formula of the universal law
!Example: In order to get out of trouble, I will make a promise that I don’t intend to keep.
-For Kant, being evil is making exceptions to rules
-There are 3 kinds of categorical imperatives:
(1) Formula of Universal Law: I shall never act except in such a way that I can also will
that my maxim become a universal law.
!In other words, making your maxims a universal law, as it was explained above.
(2)Formula of Humanity: Act in such a way that you always treat humanity never simple
as a means, but always at the same time as an end.
!In other words, treat each person with the appropriate respect.
!Example: Promising to pay someone back their money and actually keeping that
!Morality is about treating someone with respect.
-You can treat someone as a means (only if showing them the proper respect)
!Example: You can use the doctor’s knowledge about diseases as a means to treat your
-Treating someone as a “mere means” means not showing someone the proper
!An example of this would be deception (deceiving people), and coercion (threatening,
forcing, intimidating, bullying and manipulating people…) because it fails to show
Capacity to set your own goals and pursue them.
!But then I interfered with them.
(ex) You had to pay $10, 000 but then I threatened you to give the
money to me. Therefore I interfered with your goals of going to
School by taking to money for it.